Shear Alfven wave perpendicular propagation from the kinetic to the inertial regime
Published Web Locationhttps://doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevLett.93.105003
We report on observations of shear Alfven waves radiated from a source of small transverse size, and the subsequent radial confinement of wave magnetic field energy within a cylindrical plasma. The radius of confinement lies between the kinetic regime of the bulk plasma and the inertial regime at the plasma edge; this radius is found to be a function of wave frequency. Numerical calculations using kinetic theory predict a zero in the perpendicular group velocity at a radius which varies in accord with the observations. An analytic expression for the perpendicular group velocity (valid for small perpendicular wave numbers) is given in the vicinity of the zero crossing.